1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 menwill experience domestic abuse in their lifetimes. When these statistics are compared to how many staff you employ, as an employer you can begin to understand the prevalence of the problem, particularly when domestic abuse victims will suffer 50 incidents before reporting.
It is important to be aware of the risk factors that can lead to domestic abuse incidents. These are known as triggers and sadly in this current time, there is a perfect storm. Christmas is upon us and the additional stress of extra expense, spending more time at home together during the holiday season, excessive drinking can all lead to increased risk of domestic abuse. We’ve just had the World Cup, a major sporting event, which is widely understood to lead to an increase in domestic abuse incidents. We have the increased cost of living crisis putting extra pressure on families, pregnancy and a relationship ending are other risk factors, and whilst these all increase the risk of a domestic abuse or violent incident, they are not the cause. Power and Control is the only cause of domestic abuse, the mistaken belief that one person thinks they are superior to another and have the right to bully and terrorise everyone within the home. The perpetrator uses all of the above as excuses and gaslights their victim into believing they have caused the abuse and they are to blame.
As an employer, be aware of these triggers and recognise the signs of domestic abuse. Through awareness, education and training, employers can better support their employees by ensuring the workplace is a safe, non-judgemental environment and encourage employees who may be at risk to seek help sooner.
If raising awareness of these triggers and behaviours in this December issue can lead to one person identifying and helping another, who may be experiencing any of the above, then together we have done a good deed, we could even have saved a life!
To find out how you can safely address domestic abuse in the workplace please go to: www.safespaceconsultancy.org